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A Newspaper Vagabond

A Newspaper Vagabond image
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A New York oorriondont of the Tribune relat the followlgJiMM driits in ÜM Ufeof u brilliant but flMpatWi uew-paper IJohemian : The inention oí 1'latTs me nf the historv, half grotcsqac, half pathette, iifiiiii'nl' Me truc liohemiaiis, ¦ tjpt BOW almost extinta, re hoed the other nijrht in .1 popular reaort near '"tln . one wliu won d not Uie IIIh oí new .-paper lit-, ! tliat lie knew not of b eiabnrW tlu' trcarln sea i I Uon. Ot obscura origin ana ¦ ¦ uiilu knowletlge inclusive wltand brTIliant ittuiíiijiíiit, lint In liim were unitcil nmst remarkable comblaation ot good and l.ud (jiialitics. peer intellcclually OÍ thc bi ' hbday, he dellj in the companlonchlp of the diMolnte and debaaed. He woold pawn (ha coat on bii back fe clmrily. bol would necr ; ilebt. jlr was a Ixuu new poKul witli euual lolarly and analytli al arl u'vmv thuml nnirdcr with all the brutal jiiBtioe of ¦ pbotograph. In a reuortorical way be goal to anythlpg trom a bamorou rapb toative column interview, ;iii [tallan opera to atase hall match,ffoin ¦ l'n - t . u lian Bynod to a erize-flglit. lio val by turns an iille and bloatod vagraat, and aman ol clear brain, untiring ¦!¦ fertíle laexpedieot, and Incompartible a a news gatherer, hut alwuys strirtly unrellable When oí bta own volition he uadertook i ta.-k no obstarle nould disbearten hita, no persona] hardahlp great, and lie would perserere until bis object vraaattained; but frivf him i s-t raak, tbougfa ii mighl a.-.-uic equalorgreat(i compqnaation, and lie was quite likely rlect it altogether. "II yon ever hav anytliing very particular ou hand," tu one day when about to recelve un important assininent, 'don't intrust it t a, but In greal fcmergenciea, w ben Utt to niyself. look out tor me." One evcniní, whfle draggini; onl i mtaerable exiatence by ocial reportlng in Cincinnatl. our Boheini.-in lieard 1 a rallway accident a few lislant. In au instant there va a magie transtonnatiini. nevra-KatlterlDg instinct was arouied, The ihufflfDg vagrant beeanie the alen reporter, witli every faculty active. Hastea. the oilioe be found every monto ckMed. The faota were to be suppivssed as long as poteftle, and no word at ntnnatíon ooold be extractad. Tlns much be knnv; tlic disaster liad occnrrcil ncar a (Kiiintrv town about ten miles trom the city. Without a moment'g besitafldn he took to the track. It mti a dark, itormy night, and the rain cama down tu torrenU, but b plodded along manfully and cbeerfolly, aud shortly before mldnlght reacbed bia ilion'. The station operator iaid tluwrtrk wai the miles furtber on. Tiini im-cious and the seeker at"tr ms pleaded in vain lor a statennnt of the lucís. The operator iroverned ,y instrucliona, curtly ret'used to dlrolge the tlighteat detail. Argument and entreaty were ulike uuavaillajf, and the reporter was in deapéfr, when the tele;niph instrunifiit began to click. Insiantly hc graaped liis opportunity, and, iting permtesioii to dry his rain-aoaked clotbing, teated blmself by thestove, ivberc eyery sound could be dlstinctiy ln.ard. Amon" his varied ai mpIWliiienU waan thoroiiL'li knowlecljf. ui telegrapby, and _a beaat shiveriiifr ' ' blazehis practical ear drank in every word that ! over the wire. Krom the stalnm Ud, where the train employés bad pone, carne a toleriiMy comprehenalYi countofthe accident a oolliation oanaed by the violalion of orders) the ol fo'ur ot tivc persons killed and as iminy wounded. It was u pupplementary repon and explictt enough to serve ti"1 pui A oelfh boring flkriner u baatíly aroiued, and proniise ol lilerl eompensation rndaoad biin Ui harneas ;t team and drive the reporter with all speed to Cincinnatl, wbere the Enqulred office was reached al i o-'ctoek in the nioniing. An hour later a column report f the accident, eitrtrrachfg the ussential t'acts with some Imaginativo cm!elliliinciit of details, bad been put in ind the esteeined contemporánea oí the Bnquirer were badly "aoooped," while ; he chagrín and anger of tho cretive railway iiitlioritii-s w:ir tsiniply Indeacrfbable. This inenious bit of work was liberally rewarded and its author -rlven rejriilar employment Bul the incentive to continuad a.-iiou waa lackiag; the first important aasignment was deliberctcly neglected aml the depths ot degreaatlon were again Solllldeil. In time the Boliemian drifted back to New YoTk, wherehe underwent evei y fotm ol piivation and soffering that poverty eau uitliet, tlinply he would not be a man. Au artful borrower, he lived eliietly apon the bounty of tiiose who aamired hlm in ¦pite ofhis faults. Ilisappealsalleast had themerltol Crankneaa. It was mrely "Will wou leud me a dollar?" but "Qive uie adol lrr : it's sute to asseitthat 111 never pay." Kenionstrances against bis manner of life rere nnavatliiig. He would listen attentively 10 the ( ttalOffue "f his mi-deeds, and then remark complacently to his accusor, "My dear fellow, yon flatter me; yon poIt'nely do," addini; a cciutession of offenaes, compared with wnlch tlmse for which be had In en arraigued were tritíes of utter insignifieance. When Bckk fortune gmiled u pon him at rai e Intervals hc Bquandered bu smal! pOtaeaslOM with asinucli prineely prodigality a II ihere were mlUtona in reHe would give his last cent to a broth&r uutortunatu, when not knówlng wlieie he himselt would sleep that l.igUt, or how he would procure his next meal. "1 am generona, but not just" he would say. lint neither disslpatlon nor privation could check the eponlaflëoDS Him or nts wit, which was iingularly brlgbl and iparklinr. lie u rote numeroiis sketches when bianightly bed was uponabattchin Union Square and a flve cent matton pie was to him t banqaet til tor godg. It was during his darkest days tbat New York was convul.-cil by terrible labor riots. To interic Cardinal M"Closky upon the subject was ju i(l,::i Umi canie to him likcan inspiration. ile was utmost In raga, dirty and ui'sliaven. and a silver diine constituted his The dime procured a clean sbave, and pinning the collar of hi buttonless uat closely abotrt his neck to concwl hi lack ot linen he boldlv presented himself al the good cardinsil's iloor, insisting so persittently npon admlhance that the servanl doulittully perinitted liim to enter the tirst comfortable apartment he had seen for months. One of his unblackened shoes had burst wide open, and this he skilltully tnaakeil beneath aa ottomun and caludy awaited his victim. He had never seen the cardinal and expectad to behold him enterinj:, like "Hicbelieu," ciad in robes ot crimaon and ermine, ready to launch the curse of sacred Rome upon the rash intruder. The door opened and there entered an old gentleman of mild and benevolcnt aspect, who courteously Inquired "Do yon want to see me, sir?" "No, sir," replied tho visitor. "I want to see the cardinal." "I am the cardinal." 'Oh!" said the audacious interviewer With easy famllianty. '"Sit down, Cardinal. You see the present labor disturbance is a topic of vital importune e just now, and any expression of your views would be riad with great intérest by the entire country. Ninv, what do you tbink about " "Excuse me, sir," said the good man I ith a shade of asperitv. '"Thia interview is unwarrantable. I have positively decllned to be Interriewed upon this subject. What paper do you represent?" "Wcll, now, tiie tact is, Cardinal, I muy say tirtiikly and contidentially that I don'l happen to be regularlyconnected with any paper, Vuu tee, Cardinal, I haveu't eaten any Ih ing siaoa yestenlay mor n Ing, and that wadh't at lelmouico's, and I have on 1 V verv dim and mistv recollections of whát a bed is like. In my present cxtreniity oeciirred to me that If you would : dk on this matter. I could getfonror live dollars for it f rom almostuny paper in New York.'' The eminent ehurohman tjazed at his singular visitor in Mank amaaament, until liis Indlgnation gave waj to amusement, and then to compulsión. He granted "the little talk," and the result was a wonderfully graphtc and forcibly writteu interview of two coramos, Which the Hcrald L'laclly publUhed next uioruing and liiiil for. One olght, jost as the old y ear was dylng, .lohn HcCormlek, then eity editor ol the Cincinuati Enquircr, was told that Uie strange character whom he had so often hetriended was lyiujr helpless In an attic not fardlstant, and that the end wal (M approarhinjr. He hastened to the squalld apartment, and there, alone, haggard, and uiicared tor, was the pitiful wreek of one eiidowed with mental fritts which, proporly etnptoyed would have made him one of the brirhteal journalist in the land. He shook his Ik'iuI sadlv and smiled teelily : 'li's no use .lohn, old fellow- I'm bevond help. My life has been a Callara, but it will sooii be ended. Oh if I oould only have kmiwn what if I could only have geen " The living sat beslde the dead, and the neighboring bells rang out the merry tklings of a New Year's birth.


Ann Arbor Courier
Old News